Countdown to 5K: Runners hitting the homestretch ahead of Book It Through Pittston 5K


By Nick Wagner - nwagner@timesleader.com



Catherine Testa of Pittston, right, points out the route to Wyoming Valley Lady Striders Couch to 5K Program group leader Karen Moskel of Kingston in preparation for the Book It Through Pittston 5K Run/Walk Saturday morning in Pittston.


Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Members of the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders leave the CVS/pharmacy parking lot in Pittston Saturday morning for a walking tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K.


Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Members of the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders walk along Main Street in Pittston Saturday morning for a tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K.


Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Catherine Testa of Pittston, center, and Aracelis Vazquez of West Pittston join the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders as they walk across the Ft. Jenkins Bridge Saturday morning for a walking tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K.


Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Group leader Karen Moskel of Kingston, left, Catherine Testa of Pittston, and Rachel Agzigian of Wilkes-Barre and other Wyoming Valley Lady Striders make their way across the Firefighters’ Memorial Bridge Saturday morning for a walking tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K.


Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Catherine Testa of Pittston, left, and Aracelis Vazquez of West Pittston join the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders as they walk along Kennedy Blvd. in Pittston Saturday morning for a tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K.


Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

JOIN THE RUN

Here’s a schedule for the full eight weeks of the Couch to 5K program. Participants should do each workout three times per week. Each workout starts and finishes with a five-minute walk. Anyone who takes part in the program, let us know how you are doing. Email Nick Wagner at nwagner@timesleader.com.

Week 1: Alternate 60 seconds of jogging and 90 seconds of walking for a total of 20 minutes.

Week 2: Alternate 90 seconds of jogging and two minutes of walking for a total of 20 minutes.

Week 3: Do two repetitions of the following: jog for 90 seconds, walk for 90 seconds; jog for three minutes, walk for three minutes.

Week 4: Jog for three minutes, walk for 90 seconds, jog for five minutes, walk for 2.5 minutes, jog for three minutes walk for 90 seconds, jog for five minutes.

Week 5: Jog for five minutes, walk for three minutes, jog for five minutes, walk for three minutes, jog for five minutes.

Week 6: Jog for five minutes, walk for three minutes, jog for eight minutes, walk for three minutes, jog for five minutes.

Week 7: Jog 2.5 miles, or 25 minutes.

Week 8: Jog 2.75 miles, or 28 minutes.

PITTSTON — With just two weeks until the group takes on a 5K hosted by the Pittston Memorial Library, things are starting to come together for the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders’ Couch to 5K training program.

Three times this week, the group will jog 2.5 miles, or for 25 minutes. In the final week, week 8, the group will jog for 2.75 miles, or 28 minutes. That all culminates with the Book It Through Pittston 5K on Saturday, Sept. 10 through the streets of downtown Pittston.

Catherine (Rose) Testa, 48, of Pittston, who has been part of the program since the beginning, is feeling confident, but nervous, over the final stages of the program.

“It’s going well,” she said. “We changed from time running to distance. That’s a little tough.”

Testa said the cooler weather has made it a bit easier as well.

“It’s certainly easier to breathe and you don’t get exhausted,” she said.

On Saturday, the group met in Pittston to go through the course. The biggest difference is that when the group trains during the week, the course they run on is mostly flat. The Pittston course, which is used by the Tomato Festival 5K and several other races throughout the year, is notoriously hilly.

“That’s why we’re going to check it out,” she said. “It’s a little ominous feeling with the hills, but we’ll have a better idea.”

The program is designed for participants to work up to running a 5K over an eight-week period. Different paces and intervals are designated for each week, working up to a 3.1 mile race. The Lady Striders group meets three times a week throughout the Wyoming Valley, including the levee in Wyoming and Forty Fort.

Testa has experience exercising but never really got into running prior to beginning the program. This, she said, is a great start for her to continue that trend.

“I hope I continue to do this,” she said. “I’m working through the pain and I’d like to continue it.”

Get started!

If you missed this latest installment of the Lady Striders Couch to 5K training program, don’t worry. The Lady Striders will start a new program on Monday, Sept. 19. The program is limited to the first 50 participants.

This will be the Striders’ seventh program in the past two years. The practices will be Monday, Wednesday and Saturday. If interested, email Karen Moskel at karmcl@hotmail.com.

So far, the group has 11 runners signed up for the 5K in September. And if you’re hesitant about getting started in such a program, Testa said it’s worth a shot.

“Everyone works with you and it’s great,” she said. “You never know until you try it.”

Catherine Testa of Pittston, right, points out the route to Wyoming Valley Lady Striders Couch to 5K Program group leader Karen Moskel of Kingston in preparation for the Book It Through Pittston 5K Run/Walk Saturday morning in Pittston.
http://psdispatch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/web1_PSD082816Couch25K_spt_1.jpgCatherine Testa of Pittston, right, points out the route to Wyoming Valley Lady Striders Couch to 5K Program group leader Karen Moskel of Kingston in preparation for the Book It Through Pittston 5K Run/Walk Saturday morning in Pittston. Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Members of the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders leave the CVS/pharmacy parking lot in Pittston Saturday morning for a walking tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K.
http://psdispatch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/web1_PSD082816Couch25K_spt_2.jpgMembers of the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders leave the CVS/pharmacy parking lot in Pittston Saturday morning for a walking tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K. Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Members of the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders walk along Main Street in Pittston Saturday morning for a tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K.
http://psdispatch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/web1_PSD082816Couch25K_spt_3.jpgMembers of the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders walk along Main Street in Pittston Saturday morning for a tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K. Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Catherine Testa of Pittston, center, and Aracelis Vazquez of West Pittston join the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders as they walk across the Ft. Jenkins Bridge Saturday morning for a walking tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K.
http://psdispatch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/web1_PSD082816Couch25K_spt_4.jpgCatherine Testa of Pittston, center, and Aracelis Vazquez of West Pittston join the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders as they walk across the Ft. Jenkins Bridge Saturday morning for a walking tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K. Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Group leader Karen Moskel of Kingston, left, Catherine Testa of Pittston, and Rachel Agzigian of Wilkes-Barre and other Wyoming Valley Lady Striders make their way across the Firefighters’ Memorial Bridge Saturday morning for a walking tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K.
http://psdispatch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/web1_PSD082816Couch25K_spt_5.jpgGroup leader Karen Moskel of Kingston, left, Catherine Testa of Pittston, and Rachel Agzigian of Wilkes-Barre and other Wyoming Valley Lady Striders make their way across the Firefighters’ Memorial Bridge Saturday morning for a walking tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K. Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Catherine Testa of Pittston, left, and Aracelis Vazquez of West Pittston join the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders as they walk along Kennedy Blvd. in Pittston Saturday morning for a tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K.
http://psdispatch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/web1_PSD082816Couch25K_spt_6.jpgCatherine Testa of Pittston, left, and Aracelis Vazquez of West Pittston join the Wyoming Valley Lady Striders as they walk along Kennedy Blvd. in Pittston Saturday morning for a tour of the route for the Book It Through Pittston 5K. Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

By Nick Wagner

nwagner@timesleader.com

JOIN THE RUN

Here’s a schedule for the full eight weeks of the Couch to 5K program. Participants should do each workout three times per week. Each workout starts and finishes with a five-minute walk. Anyone who takes part in the program, let us know how you are doing. Email Nick Wagner at nwagner@timesleader.com.

Week 1: Alternate 60 seconds of jogging and 90 seconds of walking for a total of 20 minutes.

Week 2: Alternate 90 seconds of jogging and two minutes of walking for a total of 20 minutes.

Week 3: Do two repetitions of the following: jog for 90 seconds, walk for 90 seconds; jog for three minutes, walk for three minutes.

Week 4: Jog for three minutes, walk for 90 seconds, jog for five minutes, walk for 2.5 minutes, jog for three minutes walk for 90 seconds, jog for five minutes.

Week 5: Jog for five minutes, walk for three minutes, jog for five minutes, walk for three minutes, jog for five minutes.

Week 6: Jog for five minutes, walk for three minutes, jog for eight minutes, walk for three minutes, jog for five minutes.

Week 7: Jog 2.5 miles, or 25 minutes.

Week 8: Jog 2.75 miles, or 28 minutes.

Reach Nick Wagner at 570-991-6406 or on Twitter @Dispatch_Nick

Reach Nick Wagner at 570-991-6406 or on Twitter @Dispatch_Nick

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